Wednesday, December 03, 2008

Who Knows the Crow?

“he made friends with the crow and stayed with him for quite a long time... when he left, the crow missed him so much he didn't noticed that most of the sparkly things he had collected in his nest during his life were missing...”
You are reading the words of one of my favorite bloggers, Human Being, who lives in Iran. She inspired me to write the following poem, which I dedicate to her:
Who Knows the Crow
When was the last time you saw a crow fidget
Then squawk then rail against the oddity of the way things are,
Which in the eyes of the crow
Means that the clouds darken without warning
And the chill rises without care?

You might think you’re hearing irritation
Or exasperation
Perhaps even disgust
But when you notice the quickened pace
One leg to the other
You know it’s the dark and chill of common fear.

Sparkly things hidden in a needle nest
Falling in enough time
To be rescued if the mood was right.
But the mood is not right
So this coveted glitter falls below the fault line,
lost security from the one bright spot.

I saw a crow like this last week
Its sharp beak turning in all directions
Circle black eyes darting everywhere
Preparing for that which cannot be stopped,
For that for which you cannot prepare.

“Birdie,” I shouted. "Slow down. It’s just the wind.”
Did I hear a response? Did I hear an answer
Cloaked in pity?
Did I hear, “Person, you have no idea!”
“Yes I do,” I shouted. “I know.”
“No, no,” its body moving like wild fire, “you don’t know.”

The crow quickens its movements,
Clenches its webbed nails into the bark,
Instinctively holding on
Wings waiting for a force it cannot defeat.
Turning its head in perplexity
Unsure how its sparkly bounty broke free
Is this preparing to die?

It’s quiet now.
The wind has blown the roof two miles east
And tree branches litter the ground
Like railroad tracks splintered open.
I am walking these woods again
Perched to hear the crow’s surrender
Perched to clench my own webbed nails into the silvered bark
Steadying my grip, calling out
Seeking reassurance from beady eyes
And spent exhaustion.

“Person,” I hear “We were swept away.
It was not possible to hold on.”
“Oh my dear crow,” I said, “So where are we then?
Are we safe? Or are we too buried
Below the fault line?”
“The fault line?" each word sputtered hard and tough,
“No person,” the crow replies, “we are above it all.
We are flying free.
Our fear is gone.”


  1. WAH!

    Oh KJ, this poem is one of the sparkly things in my it!

  2. An excellent poem. Layered with an attractive allegory and symbolism.

  3. caaaw caaaw!
    KJ... this masterpiece has got a magical quality: with each reading one discovers a new layer of meaning thus transcending his/her awareness... and gradually s/he can experience the same freedom you talk about... when one has no fear...
    through the crow you've searched the human soul so deeply and analytically... you are both a poet and a psychologist!
    and i'm much honored to be connected to this sparkly thing...
    i put a link to it on my blog so that other blog friends can read it too...

    a BIG hug

  4. lavender, i am very glad that you are blogging again. and i'm glad you like this sparkly thing! thank you.

    kay, a compliment from a master. thank you.

    hb, hugs back to you. you make me think.

  5. oh my, oh my, oh my goodness this is amazing. I'm speechless. And if you have a moment, look at my post. Imagine my surprise when I stopped by here and read this. I did think of HB when I did my painting though. I always think of her when I do ravens/crows.
    Whoa KJ. You're really good!

  6. whoa, lolo, you're really good!

  7. Our fear is gone. That is what I wish the world for 2009, for as soon as possible :-)

  8. The fear is gone, flying free. I like that :) a moving story and you tell it so well!

  9. pieterbie, fear ties me up like nothing else. that is what i wish for the world too.

    val, thank you, dear friend.

  10. how do we know, welcome and thank you. i can relate to the name of your blog.


  11. Oh to be fearless like that bird! To fly without picturing the broken ont he ground.
    Thank you, delightful.